FBI Jacksonville
Amanda Warford Videll
(904) 248-7093
May 5, 2023

FBI Presents Duval Schools Parent Academy with FBI Director’s Award

WASHINGTON, D.C.—On Friday, May 5, FBI Director Christopher Wray presented the staff of the Parent Academy of Duval County Public Schools with the FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award (DCLA) during a ceremony at FBI Headquarters. Each year, the FBI Director presents the DCLA to individuals and organizations for their extraordinary contributions to the prevention of crime and violence in the community. Receiving the award on behalf of the Parent Academy were Program Supervisor Regan Copeland, Specialist Ashely VanDenMeirack, and Specialist Christina Riquelme.

The FBI Jacksonville Community Outreach Program and the Jacksonville Violent Crimes Against Children squad launched a partnership with the Parent Academy in 2018 to develop the “Be Smart with Your Kids Smartphone” program. Since then, more than 2,000 parents, caregivers, and educators have received guidance on the latest technology and apps that predators are exploiting to target local youth.

“Partnering with the Parent Academy has enabled FBI Jacksonville to bring greater awareness to local parents of the ways predators are making contact with their kids,” said Special Agent in Charge Sherri E. Onks, who also attended the ceremony. “As a result, parents have become more active in their kids’ online lives and provided us with information that has led special agents to take action and prevent other children from being abused. Simply said, local families are safer thanks to our partnership with the Parent Academy team.”

“Duval County Public Schools' Parent Academy is both honored and grateful for this distinguished recognition. This incredible partnership helps broaden Parent Academy’s reach in educating and supporting our families and their students. The safety and well-being of children is paramount to quality education, and this partnership equips parents and caregivers with additional tools to protect their children".

About the Director’s Community Leadership Award

Every year, FBI field offices around the country select a community partner making a difference and exemplifying leadership to receive the award. For more information about this prestigious award, please go to: www.fbi.gov/about/community-outreach/dcla

About Duval Schools Parent Academy

The Parent Academy of Duval County Public Schools is a FREE family resource that promotes parental involvement, enhances student achievement, and supports a caregiver’s need for personal and individual growth. Learn more at https://dcps.duvalschools.org/parentacademy.